We know that students are spending lots of time on social media: watching, commenting, sharing, and creating. Often, we tend to view this as “wasted time”, but in looking closer at the skills, habits and dispositions it takes to be a successful creator in social media spaces, we can see that this is a great space for learning.
Successful social media content creators are building audience, community and influence on a global scale – with tools that our students have at their fingertips: an internet connection and a laptop. Can we, as educators, tap into these kind of engaging environments to help our students build audience, and influence, around ideas that matter, in the spaces they enjoy?
Kim Cofino is an experienced, dynamic and innovative educator. Her international teaching has taken her to Germany, Malaysia, Thailand (ISB), Japan, and now back to Bangkok (NIST International School). Her job titles have included: Academic IT Coordinator, Technology Learning Facilitator, 21st Century Literacy Specialist, Technology and Learning Coach, consultant, and most recently she has added, consultant-in-residence at NIST International School.
Kim is passionate about empowering teachers to become learning leaders, as well as building strong collaborative teams among teacher leaders.When working with teachers, Kim enjoys helping them to authentically embed current and emerging technologies in the classroom to create a global and collaborative learning environment. Her inquiry-based, constructivist approach to teaching utilizes project-based learning experiences developed by combining the Understanding by Design framework with the design cycle.
When working with schools, Kim collaborates with all community stakeholders to create an inclusive, open and involved learning environment. Most recently, at YIS, this includes creating and implementing the Connected Learning Community (CLC): a 1:1 program for students in grades 4 – 12. The CLC features a whole-school blogging platform and Google Apps for Education (for both students and teachers), as well as regular parent sessions, empowered teacher leadership, and an integrated digital citizenship program. Due to the successful implementation of CLC, YIS is now in the next evolution of the program, where all students in grade 7 are issued both a laptop and tablet. This innovative teaching and learning environment reflects the strong community connections, engaged students, and empowered teaching community Kim has been instrumental in building.
Kim is a COETAIL co-founder, a founding partner in Eduro Learning, and a member of the Advisory, as well as the Board, for the Learning 2.0 Global Conference. She regularly consults with other international schools and work has been widely published in educational websites, journals and books. Kim is an Apple Distinguished Educator, has been a member of the K12 Horizon Report Advisory Board (2008 – 2011) as well as a regular presenter and keynote speaker at conferences and professional development sessions worldwide. She occasionally blogs at Always Learning and you can find her on Twitter @mscofino.